The Phenomenon of Self-hatred in Immigrant Circles

العربية Deutsch

with Salam Kawakibi

Dear friends of freedom of thought,

the Syrian political scientist Salam Kawakibi will be in Berlin next week – we seized the opportunity to do two events with him.

The first will take place on Thursday, May 24th at Ulme 35. This Diwan will deal with the phenomenon of self-hatred in immigrant societies. (second event: Ibn Rushd Lecture  on Old and New Elites in the Arab World)

To criticize oneself and one’s own culture is the first step to change, to improve, and a necessary procedure. But often it is only a small step that tilts this constructive behavior into a destructive one – then, self-criticism becomes self-hatred and contempt for one’s own culture.

Small wonder then, that this is a very sensitive issue within immigrant groups or minorities in a society. While self-criticism is the attempt to address mistakes in one’s own culture and society in the belief that culture and society can develop positively, self-hatred is more of a sign of resignation over one’s own culture, and can culminate in the will to distinguish oneself as a person by denigrating one’s culture of origin, to thus gain an advantage for one’s own person in the new society.
But is such non-constructive criticism helpful or beneficial for a true intercultural communication that all sides need so much?

What is the difference between constructive, legitimate self-criticism and destructive self-hatred? Where is the narrow line between legitimate self-criticism and self-hatred?

Introductory short presentation in Arabic by Salam Kawakibi, simultaneous translation (into German) by Hikmat Bushnaq, Ibn Rushd Fund. Questions and contributions to the discussion are also possible in German and English, we will translate as best as we can.

Moderation: Raid Wahiba, Ibn Rushd Fund.

When? 24.May 2018, 19:00

Where? Ulmenallee 35, 14050 Berlin-Westend, U-Bahn Neu-Westend (U2), Bus 104 Hessenallee, Bus M45 Kirschenallee, 15min Fußweg von der S-Bahn Westend (S42/S41)

Salam Kawakibi is a researcher in Political sciences and international relations and teaches in the Masters programme on Development and Migration at Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne. He is the director of the Paris office of the Arab Centre for Research and Policy Studies. From 2007-2017 he was Deputy Director of Arab Reform Initiative. He is the president of the Initiative for a New Syria, board member of “The Day After” association, and president of the board of trustees of Ettijahat – Independent Culture.

Kawakibi is a leading commentator on political reform in the Arab world. He writes essays, research papers and policy analyses; topics include human rights, civil society, migration, media, North-South relations, and political reform in the Arab World. He holds a DEA in Political Sciences from l’Institut d’Etudes Politiques, Aix-En-Provence, a DEA in International Relations from Aleppo University and a BA in Economy from Aleppo University.

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